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May 5, 2004
In This Update:
  • HIV Treatment
  • Nutrition & Quality of Life
  • HIV & Hepatitis Coinfection
  • U.S. AIDS Activism & Drug Pricing
  • HIV/AIDS Outside the U.S.
  • STD Prevention/Treatment News
  • Web Highlights
  •   HIV TREATMENT

    So Much to Read, So Little Time: Making Sense of Treatment Info
    HIV treatment is a dizzyingly massive subject to stay on top of. What do you do when there's so much info out there that you don't even know where to begin? In this terrific guide, Dr. Rebecca Young walks us through strategies for locating and evaluating reliable information.


    Turn Yourself Into an Efficient HIV Researcher
    As an HIV treatment educator, it's Lisa Frederick's job to sift all the good information out there from the worthless flotsam. In this article, Lisa explains how she ensures that her time is spent only reading the cream of the crop.

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      NUTRITION & QUALITY OF LIFE

    The Therapeutic Effect of ... Work?
    For Eric Ciasullo, who was diagnosed with HIV 14 years ago, going back to work was the best choice he could have made for his overall well-being. "Don't get me wrong, it can be really challenging taking care of myself as well as I need to," he writes. "But overall, I think organizing my life around work that I care about leaves me physically, mentally, and spiritually more healthy than organizing it around managing symptoms and pursuing healthcare. And it's great to get a decent paycheck."


    Low-Carb Diets May Carry Extra Risks for HIVers
    Are you HIV positive and hot for the Atkins diet? Can't get enough of that protein-packed meat and cheese? You may want to watch just how much of it you eat: Atkins diets are often successful weight-loss programs, but consuming too much protein can increase your chances of experiencing muscle wasting, and can also increase the stress on your kidneys -- both of which are already risks for HIV-positive people.

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      HIV & HEPATITIS COINFECTION

    Dr. Charles Rice Discusses the Latest on HIV/Hepatitis C Coinfection
    Hear the latest developments on HIV/hepatitis C coinfection straight from one of the field's foremost researchers. This multimedia interview with Dr. Charles Rice from Rockefeller University, in which Dr. Rice talks about what the future may hold in store for HIV/hepatitis C treatment, is presented by Positives for Positives of Wyoming and the International Foundation for Alternative Research in AIDS.


    Guidelines on Managing HIV/Hepatitis C Coinfection in Prisons
    Hepatitis and HIV are still alarmingly common in the U.S. prison system. Preventing and treating such infections within prisons can help reduce the chances that inmates will infect others once they're released. These guidelines on the prevention and control of hepatitis in prisons can make a useful resource for healthcare providers, prisoners and their loved ones.

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      U.S. AIDS ACTIVISM & DRUG PRICING

    Michigan Accused of Promoting Medical Discrimination Against Gays
    Michigan lawmakers are essentially trying to legalize medical discrimination against gays and lesbians, according to a major association of U.S. HIV physicians. A number of bills now working their way through the Michigan legislature would allow health workers and insurers to use moral or religious reasons as sufficient ground for refusing to treat a patient.


    Veteran's Hospital May Be Sued for Denying Transplant to HIV-Positive Vet
    The Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund has filed a complaint with the Iowa City VA Medical Center on behalf of an HIV-positive Illinois veteran who was denied consideration for a liver transplant. Despite growing evidence showing their success, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs still prohibits performing transplants on HIV-positive people.

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      HIV/AIDS OUTSIDE THE U.S.

    Uganda's Prevention Campaign Credited for Success Against HIV
    HIV prevalence in Uganda has dropped 70% since the early 1990s primarily because of a successful public HIV prevention campaign that encourages avoiding casual sex, according to British researchers. The researchers found that, between 1989 and 1995, the age of first sexual intercourse among Ugandans increased, the number of casual sexual partners decreased and condom use become more frequent.



    Nigeria Has Third-Highest Number of HIV Cases in World
    An estimated 3.8 million people are now living with HIV in Nigeria, giving it the third-highest number of HIV-positive people in the world, below only South Africa and India, according to a recently completed national survey. About 2.3 million Nigerians have already lost their lives to AIDS, the survey found.

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      STD PREVENTION/TREATMENT NEWS

    Rise of Drug-Resistant Gonorrhea Among Gay Men Forces Change in Treatment
    Drug-resistant gonorrhea has become so common in parts of the U.S. that fluoroquinolones, the class of oral antibiotics most commonly used to treat the disease, are no longer recommended for use as first-line gonorrhea treatment in men who have sex with men or in people who were infected in areas with high drug resistance, according to revised U.S. guidelines.


    LGBTQ Youths Can Get Confidential Help at New Chicago Clinic
    Chicago's Youth Sexual Health Clinic is hoping to help gay teens navigate the sometimes-awkward issue of sexual health. The new once-a-week evening clinic is staffed by young-adult counselors and caters to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) youths between the ages of 12 and 24. Free, confidential HIV testing and STD screening are offered at the clinic, parental consent is not required and treatment is free for anyone diagnosed with an STD.

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      WEB HIGHLIGHTS

    Made in India, the Ideal "Cocktail" for AIDS
    Generic versions of HIV medications that are recommended by the World Health Organization for use in poor countries are equivalent to brand-name HIV meds used in rich countries. One generic HAART combination that's been available in the developing world for years -- AZT (zidovudine, Retrovir), 3TC (lamivudine, Epivir) and nevirapine (Viramune) -- is also recommended by the U.S. National Institutes of Health as an alternative choice for first-line HIV treatment.
    Article from The New York Times, May 4, 2004 (free registration required)


    "The Secret Epidemic: The Story of AIDS and Black America"
    The dramatic impact of HIV on African Americans, particularly in the U.S.'s southern states, has received a growing amount of attention in recent years. In his new book, Jacob Levenson masterfully weaves together the stories of African Americans in the Southern United States whose lives have been battered by HIV.
    Book review from The New York Times, May 2, 2004 (free registration required)


    European Patients Lobby European Commission to Ease Its Ban on Drug Ads
    While people in the U.S. are often inundated with ads for HIV meds -- on the Web, in magazines, even on billboards -- in Europe the practice is outlawed. But at least one group of HIV-positive Europeans, not to mention some big pharmaceutical companies, are lobbying to allow for more direct advertising of prescription drugs to consumers.
    Article from The Wall Street Journal, April 30, 2004


    First Case of Potential PI Cross-Resistance Reported After Lopinavir Failure
    South African doctors say they've identified, for the first time, a specific pattern of HIV mutations that causes resistance to Kaletra (lopinavir/ritonavir).
    Article from aidsmap.com, April 29, 2004


    Triple-Nucleoside Regimens versus Efavirenz-Containing Regimens for the Initial Treatment of HIV-1 Infection
    When this study was first presented at a major AIDS Conference last year, shockwaves spread throughout the HIV community. The publication of this landmark study ends any doubts as to its results: Trizivir (AZT/3TC/abacavir) is far less effective at suppressing viral load than regimens consisting of efavirenz (Sustiva) plus two or three NRTIs.
    Abstract from The New England Journal of Medicine, April 29, 2004


    Genotypic Testing for HIV-1 Drug Resistance
    An in-depth overview of how resistance testing works, and a thorough explanation of various mutations that make HIV resistant to certain drugs.
    Knowledge Base Chapter from HIV InSite, April 2004

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    ART FROM HIV-POSITIVE ARTISTS
    Image from the May 2004 Visual AIDS Web Gallery
    "Attic Clouds Performance," 1973;
    Stephen Varble
    ASK NELSON VERGEL ABOUT
    NUTRITION AND EXERCISE
    Nelson Vergel

    Nelson Vergel, the founder of the Body Positive Wellness Clinic in Houston and a 19-year HIV survivor, is available to answer any questions you may have about nutrition and exercise for HIVers.

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